The “Fine-Tuned Machine” Edition
Happy President’s Day!
A friend forwarded this article to me this week. The headline is “More Women In Their ‘60’s and ‘70’s Are Having ‘Way Too Much Fun’ To Retire” and it comes via The New York Times. I scanned, liked it, and put it in my “maybe a good piece for the Sunday Paper” bin.
Reading it in more depth, I liked it less. On the one hand, it is a harmless, feel-good story. It’s more feature-y than newsy, showing us that ‘hey yeah these vigorous older womenfolk are full of surprises! theye’re still useful! they get out and do some work (for money, outside the home!) and, doggone-it, it’s fun! On its surface it seems super-empowering and fun in a folksy way. On second glance (or maybe first glance for some) I actually find it as sexist as they come, veiled though it may be.
The “having way too much fun” headline is a direct quote from someone profiled in the article. And I’m sure it’s true for many women who work, whether “past official retirement age” or not. And I’m also sure, if asked, that some men would also say that’s a contributing factor to staying at work. But what I don’t read in the headline or anywhere close to the top of the piece is what I’m guessing are the actual reasons why lots of men/ceo’s of the same or older age work well past retirement age. My attributed (and wholly fabricated) quotes might be something more like “I love making huge amounts of money!” or “I love being really powerful” or “I love being the boss of 20,000 people!”
It’s assumed that men are going to work, that work is business, and that business is identity. Though in real life many of those feelings are the same for women, it’s news that we are still (or, at all) working and that the will to keep doing so is casually characterized as “fun.” I think the headline for the male version of this article would be more Onion-esque. Perhaps something like “Unsurprising Study Finds Men Working Until They Are Carried Out In A Box Because They Would Be Nothing Without Their Jobs.”
Any and all men and women, of any age, who work or not, will hopefully have a bit more time over the 3-day weekend to peruse the fine-tuned and well-oiled machine that is The LZ Sunday Paper. Enjoy the compendium of news hand-picked by me, for you, about and by women in business, politics, media, the arts, science, sports, and pop culture.
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Have a nice President’s Day. As the first piece of political news below says in an oblique sort of way, I just can’t help but imagine if we had a re-imagined President’s Day Weekend this year. A different context. A different kind of holiday. A new history being written. The one we are having is also unique — totally original, and unprecedented, but not for the reasons many had thought.
See you next week!
THE PIC(K) OF THE WEEK:
BUSINESS, TECH, MEDIA:
ARTS, FASHION, SCIENCE, SPORTS, LIT & POP CULTURE:
AND WHAT’S NOT TO LOVE ABOUT:
The LZ Sunday Paper™ launched at the dawn of 2014. We expose and recirculate interesting content that is about, and frequently by, women in business, with a dose of ultra-relevant culture. We think that culture comes high and low, not much in between. Our audience is vast and not gender-driven. Every week we expect to deliver at least one good laugh. Send suggestions, clips, or names of people you think might enjoy this to LZSundayPaper@gmail.com.
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